Sunday, October 17, 2010

Rheinmetall KsT Glossy Black Script Typewriter (1956)

This is a typewriter I've been wanting to share on the blog for some time now, so I'm excited that I finally got around to it today. I like almost everything about it - Rheinmetall, like Voss and Alpina, is more of a "collector's typewriter" than a "writer's typewriter", so it is nice to have it as a showpiece that is also perfectly functional if I so choose. However, primarily due to that carriage shift, it is not as finger- and wrist-friendly as your average Hermes 3000 or Olivetti Lettera 32. Here are some pictures:

It was just about impossible to take a head-on picture without having my mug reflected in the glossy ribbon cover, so this was as close as I got. 

This was straight out of the box, before I cleaned it, if you can believe it. It's always a great feeling to get a machine from someone who obviously cared a lot about it. There was the usual grime/ eraser shavings sticking to grease on the interior, but a few minutes with some cotton swabs took care of that. 

I like the ornate paper supports on these old machines. I looked up the serial number on this one and it's dated 1956. Which makes me think that perhaps I purchased this from the son of the original owner, because otherwise he would be very old indeed to be carrying large boxes to the post office!

Here's a look at the script/ cursive typeface, lightly tinged with green from the ribbon (which didn't show up so well in the typecast, sorry). I wish I knew where to procure these colored ribbons! They're a treat to use. 

Here is the case, which is made of wood covered in leatherette fabric, and is in good condition considering its age. The bottom is a board on which the machine is fastened, and then the top closes over. I wish these old cases were more streamlined... I imagine once the typewriter is in the case, there is still quite a bit of room, unlike the almost-hermetic fit of the Hermes 3000.
Oh, finally, a look at that impressive packaging job:

I saved the Styrofoam pieces and I'm using them to pack a Hermes 3000 that I'm sending overseas. Fingers crossed that the padding works its magic a second time!


  1. It looks brand new!! Congratulations and thank you for sharing.

    One nifty feature of Rheinmetalls is that you can remove the whole carriage by undoing a couple of simple latches on either end. Convenient for cleaning and repair.

  2. It looks like magic shipping foam to me:)

  3. Wow ! Gorgeous :) I am waiting for my first script typewriter anytime now and I will post it on the blog as soon as it arrives. I could have done a typecast about the other ones but I am looking very much forward to this one.
    Thanks for sharing these gorgeous pictures

  4. That machine is gorgeous. It's case looks exactly like my Voss's case: completely un-stackable (which, really, if you've got a Voss -- or, certainly, a Rheinmetall -- you probably should be stacking it in with a bunch of other average typers, anyway, I suppose).

  5. Thanks, everyone :)

    Duffy - this one has its own prime spot away from the herd, as it should be. Speaking of unstackable cases, have you seen the Studio 44's case? *shudder*

    Richard - I will take your word for it that carriage removal is easy! (I think I'd only dare if there was a serious problem in need of repair.)

  6. "Speaking of unstackable cases, have you seen the Studio 44's case? *shudder*"

    Although, if you have two and you put one on top of the other turned 180 degrees, the two cases make an almost perfect rectangle! I realized when I saw that that it must have been designed that way deliberately for packing as many units as possible into a shipping container.

    Sometimes I think that I'm lucky I don't live in Europe. The majority of the really pretty, irresistible machines seem to be over there. I'd be even deeper in typers than I already am!

  7. I know this is a new comment on an old post. But I just got an early 60s Rheinmetall KsT and was wondering if you could tell me what the little lever at the back of the carriage to the rear of the line spacing mechanism does. It's marked L to the front and S to the back. Thanks.

  8. Although it is about 30 years since I last used my 1952 Rheinmetall KsT, I am sure these levers are to set and clear the tabs. BTW, my machine still looks perfect, I must try it again for old times sake.


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